Tenant Wants To End Lease 1 Month In...

4 Replies

So I just signed a lease with new tenants a month ago.  They have been nit picking and complaining here and there, and haven't even technically moved into the unit.  I took 1.5X for security deposit and 1st months rent.  

I just spoke to them today and they informed me their young son has respiratory issues and after explaining the living situation to the doctor, he highly recommend against them living in my unit.  The reasons they provided are due to it not having A/C, and the water heater is in one of the bedrooms in it's own closet and they are worried if it were to leak or break.

I used the lease which is provided here on Bigger Pockets in the Landlord Forms.  I was planning on keeping 1 months rent for them moving out early to cover the time it will take me to get this refilled.  Can I keep their entire security deposit which is 1.5x rent for breaking the lease?

You can technically keep charging them rent until you find a new tenant.

That said, it’s probably simpler for everyone that you tell them that you’ll let them out of their lease on May 31st for 1 month rent. Write up a quick doc and both sign it that their move out date May 31.

You’ll return their security deposit within the legal requirement (15/30 days depending on your state laws) assuming no damage

I wouldn’t use the deposit unless required for rent. Some states don’t allow it and others have caveats. So make sure you’re doing what’s allowable in your state.


I would try and work something out with them, they sound like a PITA! I always try and avoid those types of tenants at all costs. You should not have a problem re-renting now in the heat of summer. Ask them to pay until re-rented and return their security deposit as long as everything is left in move in condition. In addition, I would check your landlord tenant laws, they usually specify rules regarding the return of security deposit. If you had to go to court over this, I can tell you right now that the judge would probably feel bad for them based on the child with respiratory issues etc...It isn't worth it, move on.....

@Kim Meredith Hampton thanks for your response!  I spoke with my attorney and he said how much I charge/refund them is negotiable.  They gave me notice that they wanted to back out on May 28th, so we are treating that as a 30 day notice.  We are charging them for June (30 day notice) rent plus 1 month for breaking the lease. They already paid for the month of June, so we are taking 1 month rent out of the security deposit and returning the rest to them which they agreed on. 

We had them sign a lease termination agreement stating that the lease is over and they can't pursue any further action.